Title : Wild Horses
Author : Kate Pavelle
Publisher : Dreamspinner Press (BUY IT HERE)
Genre : M/M, Contemporary
Length : 350 pages (e-book)
Published : July 1, 2013
A Steel City Story
Homeless pickpocket Kai Alwright steals a cell phone and some cash one day only to find the owner texting him, appealing to his better qualities. The request to return the phone stings Kai’s pride; he rides his rusty bicycle all the way to the stables north of the city, where Attila Keleman, the phone’s owner, offers him a new start in the form of a job and a roof over his head. Soon Kai discovers a natural talent for work with horses, and he makes every effort to separate his new existence from his promiscuous past on the streets.
Attila is a reclusive horse trainer whose dressage trophies gather dust, and whose broken heart has been walled off. His undiagnosed Asperger’s makes life around people a challenge, but though he prefers the company of horses, Attila finds Kai’s presence tolerable—even refreshing.
When a client who rides at the stable with her daughter finds out Attila is “still gay,” she tries to run Kai off—and she doesn’t stop there. Mortified, her adult daughter runs away and falls victim to a dark figure from Kai’s past. Kai joins Attila in a rescue mission that tears the civilized masks off their hidden pasts.
Wild Horses is a story revolving around a young man named Kai Alewright. Kai, a tall slender red haired young man from Tennessee, is down on his luck. He loses his job when his company closes, and while he works some part time jobs in the area, it seems many businesses have closed their doors. Kai is left with little options except one; his boyfriend wants him to sell drugs for him. Kai refuses to do that and leaves. His boyfriend keeps all his belongings, including his license and other important documents. Once Kai gathers the money for rent and returns for his belongings, he discovers that they have all been burned. Desperate, he turns to pick pocketing. His first mark is a handsome stranger in a black tuxedo. He swipes his cell phone and sixty dollars in cash. The owner of the cell phone texts Kai asking him to return the phone but keep the cash. He tells Kai “Remember, you are better than stooping to such acts of petty thievery”. This is the first time Kai has done anything like this and his guilt and fascination with the owner of the phone send him on a long trip on his bicycle to return it.
Atilla Keleman is a well known horse trainer and owner of Blue Heron Acres, a horse training and boarding facility. We first meet him going to give a lecture on horse training. He has acquired a stallion named Vermillion. The horse has been mistreated in the past, is skittish and will let no one ride him. When Kai reaches Blue Heron to return the stolen phone, he is immediately drawn to the red horse. Not knowing Vermillion’s history, Kai decides to go over the fence and pet him after they become acquainted over some apples. All is well until the horse accidentally knees Kai in the head and he finds himself awakening in a strange bed. Once he has recovered Atilla offers the young man a job.
Wild Horses is a story of a young man down on his luck who is given a second chance and to find his self worth. Atilla is an elegant, although somewhat reclusive, horse trainer. He has a fear of large crowds but otherwise seems to function well with his students and small groups. There are many equine comparisons relating to situations and interaction with people, especially Kai and Vermillion. Both men have secrets and a history they are not willing to share as they get to know one another. I found that I was focused on certain aspects of the story that just did not work for me, so I read it again. I enjoyed the various storylines that ran through the book and helped develop the relationship and Kai’s growth. There were still a few points that seemed inconsistent, out of character or why a situation was handled a certain way; but generally those could be set aside although I never really felt connected to the main characters.
Rated 3 stars by Deb